Here’s what it’s like to get the vaccine at 3 OC sites

Inside the Anaheim Convention Center POD/ Image By Julian Reynoso
Inside the Anaheim Convention Center POD/ Image By Julian Reynoso

As of today, everyone in the United States and Puerto Rico over the age of 16 is eligible to receive the Coronavirus vaccine. Several el Don staff have already gotten their vaccine and these are the experiences we had receiving the vaccine at OC’s main three distribution centers.


Vaccine type: Moderna

Getting vaccinated at the Disneyland POD was really quick and easy. It’s all drive-thru style; you enter off Katella and follow the cones. 

Identification was checked three or four times as I drove through different checkpoints: someone who checked my appointment time, another who asked me the COVID screening questions, another who checked my temperature, and, finally, one who gave me the shot. 

It was also useful to keep the QR code I received in my email confirmation handy as it needed to be scanned by each person as well. 

There were no other cars ahead of me so it only took about five minutes total from the time I entered the lot to the time I was jabbed. I then pulled into the observation area, where a nurse came to my car and introduced herself, wrote the time in the corner of my windshield, and told me to honk if I started to feel anything wrong. She walked around the area checking on the people in it and got another couple cars situated. 

When my 15 minutes were up, the nurse popped back up to tell me I was all clear to leave. Everyone was very friendly. It had been a little windy while I was there and later in the day I got a text that because of the wind, the rest of the day’s patients would be seen at the Convention Center instead. — Carrie Graham

Anaheim Convention Center

Vaccine Type: Moderna

The Anaheim Convention Center is a walk-up site and you will have to get out of your car.

As I get to the destination, 800 West st., that the Othena app first directed me to, I was redirected to Katella St. where I entered a parking structure that looped me around through many levels till I was halted and parked at Level 3. 

As I left my vehicle, I noticed many signs that read “VACCINE” which I followed and walked for about 5 minutes into what seemed like a large loft used for convention such as Comic-Con. There I noticed about eight separated vaccination sections with also about eight tables each. The tables had two nurses, one to administer the vaccine and the other to log your information and ask you questions. 

Before getting to a vaccination table, a woman with a tablet asked me questions about my health to ensure it was safe for me to have the vaccine administered to me. 

I was directed to another table and while the registration nurse was asking me questions about myself and asked for my ID, the other nurse prepared me for the injection. They made a quick and funny joke about me being the wrong person and having to send me to the back of the line where we all chuckled and made me feel at ease. 

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It’s mentioned to me that I’ll have to wait a few minutes until a vaccine is brought over to my table and made available to me. We wait about 3 minutes in which that time I make conversation asking them questions about how long they have been there where one answered that she’s been here since 7am and leaves at 5pm with only two 15 minute breaks and one 30 minute break.

Once another nurse brought the vaccine in a syringe on a plastic Long U-shaped container. I was asked to roll up my sleeve so that the nurse could administer the vaccine. Within seconds she’s done and asks me to step into a waiting area for 15 minutes to be observed.

In the waiting area, there are about 80 people waiting for their time to leave, the number of people lowers as time passes since it was the end of the day. Everything seems to be moving very fluidly and easily. Walking around and observing are people in these yellow and orange neon vests, who ask us how we are feeling. I leave and take the path of the directions given on signs to get to the parking lot. Getting to my car I am lead down the same winding parking lot to leave. —Julian Reynoso

Santa Ana College 

Vaccine Type: Pfizer

From my personal experience, I believe that the Othena and Santa Ana College handle the point of dispensing (POD) at SAC very well. The only verification I had to take was my ID. 

When getting the POD, my parents and I were asked to take a temperature check. On my way to registration, I was handed a piece of paper that asked about my past medical health, with a total of 11 questions. 

Everything from the check-in process, registration process, being vaccinated in the vehicle as well as the 15-minute wait after being vaccinated,  went very well. 

The first booth I was directed to was for registration, as well as asking about my questionnaire, the second booth was to receive the vaccination where after I was shown where to park for my 15-minute observed wait. We were asked to honk if we needed anything. 

 After getting vaccinated the nurse handed me a card from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that listed information about my COVID-19 vaccination. On the back of the card, it listed the date of my appointment for the second dose of the Pfizer vaccination. Everything done on my phone through the Othena app made it feel like a breeze.   —Vinh Nguyen

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